The Lightbulb group will bring Home Blo Iumi’s winning teams under YECSI’s membership and provide them with further opportunities to practise innovation and creativity paving a pathway towards entrepreneurship. (Pictured here) First members of the Lightbulb group with YECSI Coordinator, John Wopereis and YECSI Membership and Communication Officer, Irish Melaume.

Following the successful launch of the Home Blo Iumi Program in September 2019, the Young Entrepreneurs Council of Solomon Islands (YECSI) has fostered a partnership with Solomon Power in the creation of the Lightbulb Group program.

Home Blo Iumi is YECSI’s annual program which focuses on promoting entrepreneurship as a viable career path with key business skills, leadership attributes and team values incorporated into a four-day program aimed at 16 – 24-year old’s. It is team focused, with teams being tasked to develop business ideas to tackle some of the biggest problems faced by youths in the country.

At the end of the four-day program, participating teams compete for top spots in the YECSI Shark Tank competition, where they are given three minutes to pitch their business ideas to a panel of judges.

Home Blo Iumi will serve as the recruitment ground for the Solomon Power sponsored Lightbulb Group, with the top three teams from the YECSI Shark Tank gaining an invitation to be a part of the group.

The Lightbulb Group will essentially play an incubation role for young aspiring entrepreneurs and leaders, where their values, knowledge, network and ideas are incubated within YECSI’s core services as an affiliate member.

It is envisioned that annually from Home Blo Iumi, a new pool of Lightbulb members will be invited into the Lightbulb Group to ensure there is continuity and new intake.

YECSI Coordinator, Mr. John Wopereis said the Lightbulb Group is vital in ensuring teams are further incubated and involved in entrepreneurship through YECSI’s core services. These currently include Ignite Networking, Teachim Me Mentoring Program, Business trainings, Information Sessions alongside further opportunities created by Solomon Power such as site visits and inspirational speakers from various professions.

“The Lightbulb group will bring Home Blo Iumi’s winning teams under YECSI’s membership and provide them with further opportunities to practise innovation and creativity, by involving them in a circle of likeminded individuals to build their network and pave a stronger pathway towards entrepreneurship,” he said.

Solomon Power Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Mr. Pradip Verma reiterated the organization’s proud involvement in the sponsoring of the Lightbulb Group program.

“Solomon Power considers it a privilege to be playing its part in contributing to the development of the future entrepreneurs and workforce of the Solomon Islands. In partnering with YECSI, Solomon Power hopes to utilize the existing network of entrepreneurs and young professionals within the country to empower our youths to create opportunities for themselves where the current job market may be lagging,” Mr Verma said.

The Lightbulb Group aims to provide members with a platform to share ideas, gain motivation, experience innovation with the overall idea on creating lightbulb moments based on the various opportunities, information and speakers they will be exposed to under YECSI’s core services.

Mr. Wopereis stressed that the value in the Lightbulb group is not just in the opportunities accorded, but the membership experience itself.

He stated: “The value of gaining this membership and being a part of this community lies within the networking and story telling that will occur. By being a part of the Lightbulb Group, participants are exposed to established business people and professionals, new experiences, new knowledge and new ideas which will play a huge role in their individual development.”

The top three teams of the YECSI Shark Tank have received their invitation letters to be a part of the Lightbulb Group 2020 intake.

Solomon Islands is a youthful nation with 70% of the nation’s total population considered as youth. The sad reality for most of these youths are the lack of opportunities available to develop and provide meaningful future prospects.

Creating opportunities for today’s youths is critical for the continued prosperity of the Solomon Islands and the partnership between YECSI and Solomon Power is a prime example of how employers can effectively work with local organisations to provide tangible and contextualized opportunities within the country.

In his concluding remarks, CEO, Mr. Verma emphasized that Solomon Power has a big part to play in lighting the way forward for our youths and in this regard, it will not compromise the carefully laid strategy that will bring long term sustainable growth and prosperity to the Solomon Islands as a nation.

“In sponsoring the Lightbulb Group program, Solomon Power acknowledges the role it must play within the country and region, in ensuring that future generations do have brighter prospects before them. We take this role very seriously and have had strategies in place for a number of years now that will lay the foundations for a sustainable way forward for entrepreneurs both young and old to prosper”, said Mr. Verma.

About the author

Philip Lilomo is the Chamber's Media & Communications Officer. Philip writes most of the Chamber's media releases. He also manages the website contents, designs the Chamber's monthly newsletter, brochures and maintains the organisation's visual branding. 

Philip can be contacted on email: media@solomonchamber.com.sb 

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